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Rimba Raid 2023 Racer Feature: Scarlette Chu

Rimba Raid 2023 Racer Feature: Scarlette Chu

Scarlette is a Canadian rider currently living in Germany, she is one of the riders this year set to travel a long distance to participate in Rimba Raid 2023. Having picked up street riding in 2019, she moved on to full enduro racing in 2022. Passionate about motorcycles and racing, Scarlette is supported by her partner Mark Richardson. Mark is also an accomplished Rimba Raid racer, he finished 3rd in his class at Rimba Raid 2022.

Scarlette and Mark have previously raced side by side in the Canadian PNWMA series. Mark’s patience, confidence and support fuel Scarlette’s learning journey. Whether on mountain bike rides in the Canadian Rockies or on week-long bike camping adventures, Scarlette and Mark constantly push each other to be better riders and racers.

When asked about her sporting heroes, Scarlette says Skylar Howes is her source of inspiration and motivation. Following the Dakar Rally, Scarlette was amazed by the physical and mental challenges it presents. Watching Howes’ journey as a privateer climbing through the ranks to become one of the top racers in Dakar and in Rally Raid, Scarlette is inspired by his determination and dedication. Howes’ story strikes a chord with Scarlette’s aspirations, helping her persevere through challenges and reminding her anything is possible while pursuing her own dreams.

Outside of riding, Scarlette is an Engineering Physics student going through an internship in Germany. Balancing studies, research, training, and racing, she revels in her busy and fulfilling lifestyle. Beyond motorcycles, Scarlette enjoys road biking and mountain biking. She cherishes the opportunity to explore Canada’s vast network of trails, from alpine routes to rocky terrains. Dedicated to her passion, Scarlette finds joy every time she is on two wheels.

Scarlette’s race preparation combines on-bike and off-bike training. Endurance rides on single track trails, pushing her limits for as long as possible to enhance her endurance and speed. While she is in Germany, Scarlette has had to temporarily pause her dirtbike training. Instead, she has shifted her focus to physical conditioning and functional core training. She believes mental strength is crucial for competing in long races like Rimba Raid, and she trains to push beyond her limits. Scarlette says, “Whether it is running, rowing or cycling I train until I feel my body tells me to stop, and then I push a little bit more”.

Scarlette is thrilled to be racing with the torquey 250cc four-stroke AJP PR5 Extreme which perfectly suits her style of riding. The bike’s unique design with a rear fuel tank adds stability during hill climbs and other challenging situations. The PR5 Extreme’s exceptional suspension further enhances its performance and makes it perfect for Rally Raids. AJP has made all the arrangements for Scarlette to race the bike in Malaysia, saving Scarlette the trouble of having to fly in her own bike.

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For new riders and first timers, Scarlette emphasizes the importance of riding within their limits. It can be tempting to let adrenaline take over and ride beyond one’s abilities, but this often leads to mistakes and considerable time losses. By maintaining consistency and pushing hard but staying within their abilities, riders can maximize their performance while racing safely. Scarlette’s resolve of “Ride within your limit” serves as a valuable reminder for all riders, especially those attempting their first race.

After Rimba Raid 2023, Scarlette plans to focus on completing her degree. Her key sporting goal is to build on her initial racing experiences and establish herself in rally racing. When she returns to Canada in 2024, Scarlette plans on investing in a full-fledged rally race bike and begin training for rallies in Mexico and the United States. We trust we will continue to hear much more about her accomplishments in Rally Racing in the coming years. Go Scarlette!

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